The IOC Review Panel on Thursday announced the participation list for Russian athletes at the Olympic Games Rio 2016. The Executive Board (EB) delegated the final review of entries of Russian athletes to this Panel, which was composed of three IOC Executive Board Members: Ugur Erdener (Chair of the Panel and Chair of the Medical and Scientific Commission), Claudia Bokel (Chair of the Athletes’ Commission) and Juan Antonio Samaranch.
In accordance with the decision of the IOC Executive Board on 24 July 2016, the IOC would accept entries by the ROC only if a number of very strict conditions were met. The role of the Panel was to review this process.
The Review Panel based its review on the International Federations’ decisions in relation to the entry of each individual athlete in their corresponding sport, which took into account only reliable adequate international tests, and the specificities of the athlete’s sport and its rules, in order to ensure a level playing field.
The Review Panel subsequently reviewed the positon of the independent arbitrator appointed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in relation to the evidence provided to meet those criteria.
The result from the IOC Review Panel is as follows: 271 athletes will form the team entered by the Russian National Olympic Committee (ROC) from the original entry list of 389 athletes.
The list of criteria set by the IOC EB on 24 July 2016):
The IOC EB took the following decision on 24 July concerning the participation of Russian athletes in the Olympic Games Rio 2016:
1. The IOC will not accept any entry of any Russian athlete in the Olympic Games Rio 2016 unless such athlete can meet the conditions set out below.
2. Entry will be accepted by the IOC only if an athlete is able to provide evidence to the full satisfaction of his or her International Federation (IF) in relation to the following criteria:
- • The IFs*, when establishing their pool of eligible Russian athletes, to apply the World Anti-Doping Code and other principles agreed by the Olympic Summit (21 June 2016).
- The absence of a positive national anti-doping test cannot be considered sufficient by the IFs.
- The IFs should carry out an individual analysis of each athlete’s anti-doping record, taking into account only reliable adequate international tests, and the specificities of the athlete’s sport and its rules, in order to ensure a level playing field.
- The IFs to examine the information contained in the IP Report, and for such purpose seek from WADA the names of athletes and National Federations (NFs) implicated. Nobody implicated, be it an athlete, an official, or an NF, may be accepted for entry or accreditation for the Olympic Games.
- The IFs will also have to apply their respective rules in relation to the sanctioning of entire NFs.
3. The ROC is not allowed to enter any athlete for the Olympic Games Rio 2016 who has ever been sanctioned for doping, even if he or she has served the sanction.
4. The IOC will accept an entry by the ROC only if the athlete’s IF is satisfied that the evidence provided meets conditions 2 and 3 above and if it is upheld by an expert from the CAS list of arbitrators appointed by an ICAS Member, independent from any sports organisation involved in the Olympic Games Rio 2016.
5. The entry of any Russian athlete ultimately accepted by the IOC will be subject to a rigorous additional out-of-competition testing programme in coordination with the relevant IF and WADA. Any non-availability for this programme will lead to the immediate withdrawal of the accreditation by the IOC.
Beyond these decisions, the IOC EB reaffirmed the provisional measures already taken on 19 July 2016. They remain in place until 31 December 2016, and will be reviewed by the EB in December 2016.
Additional sanctions and measures may be imposed by the IOC following the final report of the IP and due legal procedure by the IOC Disciplinary Commission established on 19 July 2016 under the chairmanship of Mr Guy Canivet (Vice-Chair of the IOC Ethics Commission, former member of the French Constitutional Court and President of the
French Cour de Cassation) and the IOC EB.
The IOC EB reaffirms its serious concerns about the obvious deficiencies in the fight against doping. The IOC thus emphasises again its call to WADA to fully review their anti-doping system. The IOC will make its contribution to this review by proposing measures for clearer responsibilities, more transparency, better supervision procedures and more independence.
* The IAAF has already established its eligibility pool with regard to Russian athletes.
This story first appeared in the blog, The Sport Intern. The editor is Karl-Heinz Huba of Lorsch, Germany. He can be reached at ISMG@aol.com. The article is reprinted here with permission of Huba.